Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education

Academic Leadership Development Institute

ALDI participants with CPE staff
ALDI participants with CPE staff.

The Academic Leadership Development Institute, coordinated by the Council, provides a series of highly-interactive sessions and small group seminars led by faculty and administrators from across Kentucky and other states. The goal is to create a learning community of early career, underrepresented minority faculty and staff who are on track for professional advancement.

This year’s cohort consists of 21 professionals from Kentucky's universities and the Kentucky Community and Technical College System. Institutional leaders nominated candidates for the yearlong initiative based on their leadership ability, interest in advancement, and dedication to higher education. Participants cannot have previous administrative experience.

Current Members


Alexandria Carrington

Hopkinsville Community College

A Hopkinsville native, Carrington is a senior administrative assistant for student affairs at Hopkinsville Community College. She has a bachelor's degree from Austin Peay State University. She also has certificates in TESOL and Data Entry Operator and is working on another for payroll accounting specialist. She enjoys learning languages in her spare time, with Spanish being her first language love. Her interest in teaching language was piqued when she encountered English-language learners in her role at HCC and saw how hard it was for them to ask for help. In addition to her normal job duties, Carrington goes out of her way to assist students, and she has been recognized by the higher ed community twice for these efforts.

Sebrena Chapman-Fitzsimmons

Jefferson Community and Technical College

Chapman-Fitzsimmons is a nursing instructor at Jefferson Community and Technical College. She has a Doctor of Nurse Practice in Executive Leadership and has been a registered nurse for over 30 years, and uses her talents in missions work in third-world countries. She has worked in medical/surgical, progressive care, telemetry, intensive care, cardiac care, and long-term care areas of nursing. Her mission in life is to help underserved populations achieve their education goals.


Trisha Clement-Montgomery

University of Kentucky

Clement-Montgomery is the Dean of Students at the University of Kentucky. She oversees multiple units, including Residence Life, Fraternity and Sorority Life, the Office of Student Conduct, the Center for Support and Intervention, and Student Organizations and Activities. Clement-Montgomery holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership and a master’s degree in educational psychology from the University of Kentucky, as well as her bachelor's in psychology from Western Kentucky University. As a native of New York City, Caribbean American, and first-generation student, Clement-Montgomery knows firsthand the potential challenges that students may encounter when entering the higher education landscape. As a result, Clement-Montgomery is dedicated to advocating for the needs of students while simultaneously working to ensure that all students from various backgrounds feel welcomed and a sense of belonging.


Jarrod E. Druery

Northern Kentucky University

Druery is an assistant professor of educational leadership at Northern Kentucky University. He has a bachelor's degree in human resources and a masters degree in educational leadership from Texas A&M University, and a doctorate in educational leadership and organizational development from the University of Louisville. He teaches courses focused on higher education, action research, qualitative research, diversity, equity, inclusion, belonging, and anti-oppression. Druery’s scholarly work has been presented at national and regional conferences and published in various academic journals, and is a reviewer and member of editorial boards for several publications. Dr. Druery is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. and several professional associations such as AERA, ASHE, ILA, and NASPA.


Patricia Torres Fouse

Madisonville Community College

Fouse is an assistant professor at Madisonville Community College. She has a Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from Murray State University. She has also completed several graduate-level courses at Murray State University and Western Kentucky University. Fouse is originally from Panama Republic of Panama, and has centered her studies on serving non-English-speaking students.


Patrick Gonzalez

Morehead State University

Gonzalez is the Director of Information Security and Compliance at Morehead State University. While working full-time for the university, he has earned an undergraduate and graduate degree in Computer Information Systems and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Educational Technology Leadership from MSU. Over the past 18 years, Gonzalez has held several staff positions at MSU from the IT Helpdesk to Sr. Systems Programmer/Analyst to Director of Enterprise Applications. During that time, he has witnessed again and again the difference MSU faculty have made in the lives of both traditional and non-traditional students, and hopes to continue serving the university and its mission for years to come.


Erica Holloway-McDaniel

University of Louisville

Holloway-McDaniel is a director of the Cardinal Bridge Academy. She has a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Kentucky and a Master of Education from Arizona State University. She is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Organizational Development from the University of Louisville. Her educational experience includes teaching, advising, program development, project management, and more. Her areas of interest include social impact, DEIB, and online education. Holloway-McDaniel is an appointed Commissioner of the University of Louisville Commission on Diversity and Racial Equity and is an active member of the College of Business DEI committee. She also volunteers with several non-profits throughout the Louisville community and serves on various advisory councils.


Veronica Johnson

University of Louisville

Johnson is a senior online enrollment counselor at the University of Louisville. She has a Bachelor of Arts in strategic communication from Morehead State University and a Master of Arts in Higher Education Administration from the University of Louisville. She is a board member of TAB- Open Arms Helping Hands.

Kyndra Knight

Jefferson Community and Technical College

Knight is an assistant professor of psychology at Jefferson Community and Technical College. She has a bachelor of Science in interdisciplinary studies from Hodges University and a Master of Arts in psychology from Saybrook University. Knight has a wide range of educational experience, and her interests include student success, organizational development and leadership, and DEI.


Dekuwmini (Dee) Mornah

Northern Kentucky University

Mornah is an Assistant Professor of Entrepreneurship at Northern Kentucky University. A native of Ghana, he has degrees from the University of Ghana (bachelor's), University of Mississippi (masters and doctorate) and the University of Florida (post-doctorate). Prior to working in Kentucky, Mornah was an associate professor at the Virginia Military Institute. His research focuses on migration, culture, entrepreneurship and the interplay of institutions in national entrepreneurial outcomes. As a result of his bi-cultural exposures, he is passionate about connecting American and African businesses or entrepreneurs to explore opportunities and solve problems across national boundaries.


Monica Mundy

Eastern Kentucky University

Mundy is an assistant professor in the Department of Public Health at Eastern Kentucky University. She has a Master of Public Health degree from Eastern Kentucky University and Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from the University of Kentucky. She is currently a Doctoral Candidate in Education Sciences at the University of Kentucky, Department of Kinesiology and Health Promotion. As a practicing Public Health Practitioner, Mundy is a dedicated tobacco control advocate focused on advocacy and policy change in local Kentucky communities. Her current research interests include youth empowerment, social emotional learning, and teacher well-being. In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering in the community on youth engagement and empowerment initiatives.

Muniz Sarmiento

Ramon Muniz Sarmiento

Owensboro Technical and Community College

Muniz Sarmiento is a Spanish instructor at Owensboro Technical and Community College. He has a doctorate in Spanish from Florida International University (FIU), where he also worked as an instructor of Spanish for four years at lower and upper division classes. He received the Doctoral Year Fellowship from FIU to complete and defend his dissertation: Primitivism and Women Poetry in the Southern Cone: Gabriela Mistral, Juana de Ibarbourou and Alfonsina Storni. An author of publications, his research interests include Southern Cone literature, Latin American women writers, Latino women writers in the United States, Primitivism, and the critique to modernity in Latin American literature and art, and Spanish film.


Gera Nelson

Morehead State University

Nelson is an assistant professor in the Early Childhood, Elementary and Special Education Department. She received her bachelor's from FAFI University in Brazil, a masters from Georgia Southwestern State University and a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from Georgia Southern University. Originally from Brazil, she is fluent in Portuguese, Spanish and English), and some Cebuano (Philippines). Nelson has also taught P-12 education in the US, including at Asbury University and Lindsey Wilson College, for 23 years.


Anita Nelums

Bluegrass Community and Technical College

Nelums is the Director of Counseling Services at Bluegrass Community and Technical College. She has a Bachelor's of Social Work from Lincoln Memorial University and master's degree from Lindsey Wilson College, School of Professional Counseling. Shaped by experiences as a low-income, minority, first-generation college student, she has a passion for helping others, Nelums has a diverse social work and therapeutic background including foster care, independent living, behavioral supports, spousal abuse, domestic violence and other societal challenges. She is part of several community organizations serving disadvantaged populations and is a certified Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR) Gatekeeper Suicide Prevention trainer.


Sierra O'Cull

Maysville Community and Technical College

O'Cull is a Success Coach at Maysville Community and Technical College. She has a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Kentucky and is pursuing a Master of Business Administration from Morehead State University. Her campus involvement includes coordinating the College’s tutoring efforts, teaching a First-Year Experience course and serving as a part-time alumni coordinator. O’Cull was also an inaugural member of the MCTC Alumni Association Board of Directors and served as a Student Services and Support Strand Representative for the Kentucky Community and Technical College System’s ALIGN Project.


De’Sarae Perry

Workforce Development Liaison, Maysville Community and Technical College

Perry is the workforce development liaison for Maysville Community and Technical College. She has a Bachelor in Science and Education in allied professions. Perry has a wide variety of working experience in different career paths, however her passion is her work outside of work, running sports groups for the youth and serving on various community- and education-focused organizations. Her mission is to create awareness and confidence in the young athletes in the area, boosting their ability to attain scholarships and educations.


Chris Stout

Gateway Community and Technical College

Stout is an academic advisor for the Early College Opportunities at Gateway Community and Technical College. He has an Associates of Applied Science in computer information systems from Ivy Tech Community College and a Bachelor of Science in business information systems from Northern Kentucky University. He also served overseas as an Aviation Operations Sergeant and Assistant Battle Captain in the U.S. Army National Guard. Chris has 11 years of experience in higher education, spending the past 8 years working with the dual credit population. In his free time, he enjoys spending time with his friends and family, listening to music, and learning to play new instruments.


Neisha Wiley

Northern Kentucky University

Wiley is an assistant professor at Northern Kentucky University. She has her undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Cincinnati’s School of Social Work and a Doctor of Education from Northern Kentucky University. She is a licensed social worker in the State of Ohio and has worked in the field of social work for over 20 years. Wiley’s research interests include attrition in social work, women, self-care, intersectionality and access for underrepresented populations in higher education.


Elaine Wilson

Somerset Community College

Wilson is the Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for Somerset Community College. She holds two advanced degrees in social work with an emphasis in community organization and is pursuing a Doctorate in Social Work with an emphasis in administration and leadership. In addition to a certification as a Diversity Professional, Wilson holds a certification from the National Association of Social Work’s Academy of Certified Social Workers; and certification as an Adult Mental Health First Aid USA professional for the college in order to assist should employees require assistance with mental health issues. Outside of work, she is a member or in a leadership roles of many county, state and national community organizations.


Erica Yahya

Jefferson Community and Technical College

Yahya is an assistant professor in the Psychology and Human Services department. A first-generation of college student from an immigrant family, she has an associate degree from Rockland Community College (NY), a Bachelor of Science/Human Science from Our Lady of the Lake University, a Master of General Psychology, and a doctoral degree (PSYD) in Psychology from Ashford University. Throughout her 13 years of teaching, she has been an advocate for women, children, minorities, LGBTQ+ community and immigrants. Yahya is multilingual and has been serving community and specially refugees (KRM) with translation, assimilation as well as college prep activities. She advises ESL and international students and is passionate about her students’ success in life.

Past Membership





Last Updated: 4/3/2023